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What Motivated Amazon to Eliminate Plastic Air Pillows from Its Packaging?

Amazon Paper Fillers

Amazon announced on Thursday that it has removed 95% of plastic air pillows from its packaging in North America and is replacing them with paper fillers made from 100% recycled content.


This change represents Amazon’s largest effort to reduce plastic packaging, eliminating nearly 15 billion plastic pillows annually.


"We aim to fully remove plastic air pillows in North America by the end of the year. We will continue to innovate, test, and scale to prioritize curbside recyclable materials," said Pat Lindner, VP of Mechatronics and Sustainable Packaging.


The transition away from plastic filler began in October 2023 when Amazon launched its first U.S. automated fulfillment center to eliminate plastic-delivery packaging. Amazon worked with suppliers to source paper fillers that are also curbside recyclable.


This is not Amazon’s first step to reduce packaging waste. In 2015, the company launched the Ships in Product Packaging program to reduce the use of its signature brown boxes by shipping products in their original packaging.


Key Points

  • Amazon's transition will result in the annual use of nearly 15 billion fewer plastic pillows.

  • The new paper fillers are composed of 100% recyclable materials and are suitable for curbside recycling.

  • The transition away from plastic fillers commenced in October 2023, marked by the introduction of Amazon's first U.S. automated fulfillment center aimed at eliminating plastic delivery packaging.


FAQs

Q1. Why is Amazon removing plastic air pillows from its packaging?

Amazon is removing plastic air pillows to reduce plastic waste and enhance sustainability by using eco-friendly packaging materials.


Q2. What will replace the plastic air pillows in Amazon's packaging?

Plastic air pillows will be replaced with paper fillers made from 100% recyclable materials.


Q3. Are the new paper fillers recyclable?

Yes, the new paper fillers are curbside recyclable, meaning they can be placed in your regular recycling bin.


Q4. When did Amazon start this transition away from plastic fillers?

The transition began in October 2023 with the opening of Amazon's first U.S. automated fulfillment center designed to eliminate plastic-delivery packaging.


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